NYC celebrates ‘National Small Business Week,’ promotes economic pandemic recovery

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Jahlil Rush, Production Assistant

Small businesses are regarded as the backbone of America, and New York City is no exception to having them. The New York City Department of Small Business Services recently celebrated ‘National Small Business Week’ with a mission to highlight the importance of supporting local businesses in different diverse communities.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams used the celebration to talk about how small businesses will bounce back after a devastating two years plagued by the COVID-19 pandemic. SBS Commissioner Kevin Kim helped to kick-off the festivities on May 2.

“The best way to help New York City’s small businesses is to meet them where they are, and on their terms,” Kim said at the event. “During National Small Business Week, we are bringing our mobile unit to every borough and celebrating our small businesses with everything from synchronized dance to food and giveaways.”

Adams joined other city leaders to talk about the last two years of economic hardship the city’s local economy has endured, according to News 12 The Bronx.

In addition to kicking off the event in the Bronx, Adams signed Executive Order 15, a law that sets up a small-business advisory commission. Small-business leaders will ensure that the order is carried out in all five boroughs.

“New York is a big city of small businesses, which make our city vibrant, resilient, and reliable,” Adams said. “We are celebrating National Small Business Week by taking the city’s small business services on tour in every borough. And by establishing a Small Business Advisory Commission, we are empowering small business leaders to help shape an inclusive economic recovery.”

The newly established commission will host bimonthly meetings, both virtually or in-person.

The executive order was a crucial piece in Adams’ “Rebuild, Renew, Reinvent, A Blueprint for New York City Economic Recovery,” an economic plan he unveiled earlier this year.

The commission will also advise Adams on initiatives and strategies to improve the business and regulatory environment for small businesses.

Companies used National Small Business Week as a chance to announce partnerships with local businesses.

The Citizens Committee for New York City, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting civic leaders, announced that Wells Fargo & Co. donated $250,000 to its Neighborhood Business Grant program. The program will supply microgrants of up to $10,000 to small businesses, with a specific focus on those owned by marginalized groups, according to Harlem World Magazine.

Each borough celebrated Small Business Week uniquely.

In St. George, Staten Island, the SBS’s mobile unit was stationed with staff on standby, supplying one-on-one services for people looking for employment and businesses looking to improve in their respective industries.

For entertainment, members of the Staten Island FerryHawks baseball team were in attendance and the Sri Lankan Dance Academy of New York performed, according to the Staten Island Advance.

Other neighborhoods with notable celebrations were Bedford-Stuyvesant in Brooklyn, Chinatown in Manhattan and Jackson Heights in Queens.